As the front man for The Clash from 1977 onward, Joe Strummer helped lead a charge that changed pop music. This documentary from Julien Temple (The Filth and the Fury) chronicles Strummer not just as a legend, but as a communicator and as a man.
Julien Temple (born 26 November 1953 in London) is an English film, documentary and music video director. He began his career with films featuring the Sex Pistols, and has continued with various off-beat projects.
Temple grew up with little interest in film until he discovered the works of French anarchist director Jean Vigo when he was a student at King’s College, Cambridge. This, along with his interest in the early punk scene in London in 1976 led to his friendship with The Sex Pistols, leading him to document many of their early gigs.
His first film was a short documentary called Sex Pistols Number 1, which set out to show the rise of the band from 1976-1977 in a series of short clips from television interviews and gigs.
This led to Temple making The Great Rock And Roll Swindle, another documentary, telling the story of the band from the viewpoint of their manager, Malcolm McLaren, as band members Johnny Rotten and Sid Vicious had left. The film told of the… read more
The archive interviews with Strummer and the people who actually knew him were informative and pretty cool. Unfortunately you've got to sit through a lot of hobo camp-style interviews (who's idea was the campfire? Really) with a bunch of pretentious shitbags (does anyone seriously give a shit what Johnny Depp thinks of The Clash? Really?) who come close to making The Future is Unwritten unwatchable.
Stylish but meandering documentary from director Julien Temple gets off to an intriguing start - with some insightful interviews and clever incorporation of footage - but it fails to sustain its energy. Joe Strummer is an interesting subject, and there's a lot of great music, but this unfortunately turns out to be a an only modestly compelling "rockumentary".